Let's Be Frank: Kaminsky for Player of the Year
Few players in the country entered the 2014-15 season with as much hype and promise as senior Frank Kaminsky. Somehow he managed to exceed those lofty expectations. The 2015 preseason Big Ten Player of the Year and preseason AP All-American, Kaminsky put together a season worthy of consensus national player of the year honors, winning the Wooden Award, the Naismith Trophy, the Oscar Robertson Trophy, and was also named national player of the year by the Associated Press, Sporting News and USA Today, while garnering consensus first-team All-America honors.
Simply put, Kaminsky did it all for Wisconsin. He was the only player in NCAA Division I to average at least 17.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.5 blocks per game. On the season, the 7-footer from Lisle, Illinois, led the Badgers in points (18.8), rebounds (8.2), assists (103), blocks (57), field goal percentage (.547), 3-point field goal percentage (.416), free throws (156) and free throw attempts (200). Kaminsky led Wisconsin to Big Ten regular season and tournament championships, as well as a return trip to the Final Four, where the Badgers bested Kentucky to reach the program's first national championship game since 1941.
The breakout began a year ago for Kaminsky. After averaging just 10.3 minutes and 4.2 points per game as a sophomore, Kaminsky caught everyone's attention during his junior campaign with a consensus first-team All-Big Ten season in which he led the Badgers in points (13.9) and rebounds (6.3), while posting the third-highest block total in UW history (66).
A soft-shooting big man with quickness around the basket, Kaminsky announced his dramatic improvement by scoring a school-record 43 points against North Dakota (11/19/13), and put his lethal inside-outside game on display (6-for-6 on 3-pointers). Just the fifth 7-footer in UW history, Kaminsky displayed a knack for elevating his play at the biggest moments. During the 2015 NCAA Tournament, Kaminsky scored 29 points to lead UW back to the Final Four for a second-straight season with a win over Arizona (3/28). He then followed up with double-doubles against Kentucky (4/4) in the national semifinal (20 pts, 11 reb) and against Duke (4/6) in the national championship (21 pts, 12 reb). In the 2014 NCAA Tournament, Kaminsky was named West Regional Most Outstanding Player following his 28-point, 11-rebound virtuoso against No. 1 Arizona to send UW to the Final Four.
Honors (as of 4/14/15)
· 2015 Wooden Award Winner
· 2015 Naismith Trophy Winner
· 2015 Oscar Robertson Trophy Winner
· 2015 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Winner (Center of the Year)
· 2014-15 AP, Sporting News & USA Today National PoY
· 2014-15 Consensus First-Team All-American
· 2014-15 Senior CLASS Final 10
· 2015 All-NCAA Tournament Team
· 2014-15 Big Ten Player of the Year
· 2014-15 First-Team All-Big Ten
· 2014-15 Preseason Big Ten Player of the Year
· 2014-15 Preseason AP All-American
· 2014 NCAA Tournament West Region MOP
· 2014 First-Team All-Big Ten
· 2014 USBWA All-District
· Naismith Trophy National Player of the Week (1/5)
· Six-time Big Ten Player of the Week (UW record)
Record Book (as of 4/14/15)
· First in UW history to win National Player of the Year (Wooden, Naismith, Oscar Robertson)
· The 18th consensus All-American in UW history
· Just the second player in UW history to post 1,000 points, 500 rebounds and 100 blocks
· Set UW single-game record with 43 points vs. North Dakota (11/19/13)
· Set the UW career blocks record (153)
· His 66 blocks in 2013-14 tied for the third-best single-season mark in UW history
Kaminsky is the only major conference player to lead his team in points, rebounds, assists, blocks and steals.
Career (as of 4/14/15)
· Has appeared in 144 career games (79 starts)
· Owns 67 career double-digit scoring games; 24 games of 20+ points
· Has scored 1,458 career points, which ranks 9th in UW history
· Ranks 7th in UW history in career field goal percentage (.522)
Started all 39 games he played in ... led the Badgers in points (18.8), rebounds (8.2), assists (103), blocks (57), FG% (.547), 3FG% (.416), FTs (156), FTAs (200), and was second for steals (33) ... Kaminsky was the only player in NCAA Division I to average at least 17.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.5 blocks per game. ... eclipsed the 20-point mark in 13 of UW's last 22 games scored in double figures in all but one game on the season (38-of-39) ... posted a Big-Ten leading 14 double-doubles ... recorded a double-double in the national championship vs. Duke (4/6) with 21 points and 12 rebounds ... tallied a double-double with 20 points and 11 rebounds, while adding two blocks and two assists to lead UW past Kentucky in the national semifinal at the Final Four (4/4) ... racked up 29 points and added six rebounds vs. Arizona in the Elite Eight (3/28) ... poured in a season-high 31 points (11-17 FG, 3-4 3FG) on Senior Day vs. Michigan State (3/1), adding eight rebounds, three assists, three blocks and two steals to help UW clinch at least a share of the Big Ten regular season title ... led Wisconsin with 18 points, eight rebounds, two assists and one block on the road at Maryland (2/24) ... had 23 points (11-16 FG), 11 rebounds against Illinois (2/15) ... scored a game-high 22 points, including eight in overtime alone to outscore Michigan, plus nine rebounds to lead UW to a win (1/24) ... double-double (13 pts, 11 reb), while also tying a career-high with six assists vs. Iowa (1/20) ... scored 17 points, including a pair of 3-pointers, and hauled down nine rebounds vs. Duke (12/3) ... tallied 20 points, a career-high 15 rebounds and a career-best seven blocks vs. Green Bay (11/19).
Started all 38 games ... earned NCAA West Region Most Outstanding Player award after leading UW to the Final Four ... selected first-team All-Big Ten selection by both the media and the coaches ... twice named Big Ten Player of the Week (Feb. 17, Nov. 18) ... averaged a team-best 13.9 points and 6.3 rebounds per game ... finished the season ranked second in the Big Ten in field goal percentage (.528) and 12th in the conference in scoring ... shot 37.8 percent (37-for-98) from 3-point range and 76.5 percent (101-132) from the free throw line ... ranked sixth in the conference in blocks per game (1.7) and eighth in rebounds (6.3) ... finished with the third-best single season blocks (66) total in UW history ... reached double figures in scoring 25 times ... averaged a team-best 16.4 points and 5.8 rebounds per game during the NCAA tournament ... netted a UW school-record 43 points against North Dakota (Nov. 19), marking the fifth-highest single-game scoring mark in Division I on the season. Kaminsky's 43-point outing equaled the most by a Big Ten player since 1996-97 ... earned second career double-double in the Elite Eight against Arizona (March 29), pouring in 28 points and adding 11 rebounds on 11-of-20 (.550) shooting from the field. His 28 points were the second-highest total in an NCAA game in UW annals ... tallied 19 points on 8-of-11 (.727) shooting from the field and tallied a career-high six blocks against Baylor (March 27) in the Sweet 16 ... scored 19 points and added five rebounds in the third round of the NCAA tournament against Oregon (March 22) ... shot 9-of-16 (.563) from the field against Michigan State (March 15) in the Big Ten tournament semifinals, finishing with 28 points ... grabbed a career-best 12 boards against Minnesota (March 14) in the Big Ten tournament quarterfinals ... scored 22 points and added five rebounds, two blocks and two steals against Purdue (March 5) ... scored 21 points and added seven rebounds and two assists at Iowa (Feb. 22) ... earned first career double-double at Michigan (Feb. 16), posting 25 points and 11 rebounds on 11-of-16 (.688) shooting from the field ... finished 9-for-9 (1.000) from the free throw stripe against Minnesota (Feb. 9), scoring 17 points and grabbing six boards ... scored 16 points and added six rebounds and three blocks at Purdue (Jan. 25) ... posted 15 points and six rebounds against Illinois (Jan. 8) ... tallied 16 points, four rebounds, two blocks and two steals vs. Milwaukee (Dec. 11) ... recorded nine points and a career-high 12 rebounds at Virginia (Dec. 4) ... scored a game-high 21 points and added six rebounds against Oral Roberts (Nov. 23) ... shot 16-of-19 (.842) from the field, including a 6-for-6 (1.000) effort from beyond the arc in his school-record 43-point performance vs. North Dakota (Nov. 19) ... scored 16 points and added eight rebounds and a career-high four blocks at Green Bay (Nov. 16).
Appeared in all 35 games, starting the first two games of the season ... averaged 4.2 points and 1.8 rebounds per contest ... led the team in free throw percentage (.767) among all Badgers with at least 20 attempts ... scored eight points and grabbed two rebounds against Michigan in the Big Ten tournament quarterfinals ... posted career-highs in points (19), free throw shooting (12-14), rebounds (5) and minutes (23) at Illinois ... tied a career-high with three assists against Ohio State ... recorded a pair of blocks against Michigan ... finished 2-for-2 (1.000) from long range at Indiana ... went 4-for-4 (1.000) from 3-point range against Samford, finishing with 16 points ... posted 11 points on 4-for-6 shooting (.667) against Nebraska-Omaha ... tallied 10 points, three assists, two steals and a block against Presbyterian on ... recorded six points and added four rebounds in first career start against Southeastern Louisiana
Played in 35 of 36 games ... shot 85.7% on free throws in Big Ten play (6-of-7) ... played in all three NCAA tournament games, averaging 6.3 minutes per contest ... grabbed career-high 6 rebounds at No. 7 Michigan State ... collected 3 rebounds and had 2 points at Purdue ... posted 4 rebounds in 6 minutes at Nebraska ... posted 5 points and 4 rebounds against UNLV ... career-high 14 minutes played against Green Bay, scoring 4 points with 1 rebound and 1 block ... career-high 9 points in 9 minutes against UMKC, going 3-for-4 from the field and added 3 rebounds, 2 blocks and an assist ... played in his first collegiate game against Kennesaw State, scoring 5 points with 5 rebounds and 1 block in 10 minutes
Named first-team all-state by the Chicago Sun-Times and the IBCA and second-team all-state by the AP after averaging 14.2 points, 8.7 rebounds, 4.2 blocks and 2.8 assists as a senior ... also named all-area, all-conference and East Suburban Catholic Conference Player of the Year ... averaged a double-double with 13 points, 10 rebounds and 4 blocks per game as a junior ... honorable mention all-state, all-conference and all-area as a junior ... helped Benet post a 26-4 record in 2009-10 and reach the supersectionals, scoring 39 in a state tournament game ... high school coach was Gene Heidkamp
Parents are Frank and Mary Kaminsky ... has two sisters, Kaylee and Hannah; three step-sisters Jamie, Gabbie and Grace and a step-brother, Steve ... father, Frank, played college basketball at Lewis University where he finished as the 7th-leading scorer in school history with 1,521 points and was elected to the school's Hall of Fame in 1992; also played professionally in South America ... mother, Mary, played volleyball at Northwestern ... aunt, Karen, and uncle, Jim, each played basketball at Northwestern ... majoring in life science communications
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